26-year-old engineer plans to generate solar power at night


Tons of Mirrors, an energy company that focuses on making solar power cheaper and accessible, plans to make sunlight a 24-hour phenomenon. The company’s CEO, Ben Nowack, is a 26-year-old tech innovator who previously worked with Space X. Nowack plans to install a special setup in space, incorporating large mirrors that could redirect sunlight to solar panels on Earth at night.

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“Today, with the solar panels that exist, it’s a $20 billion a year industry,” Nowack said, as reported by Vice. “What I’m building is bigger than any of the markets they have right now. If it’s the electric solution, and let’s say in 200 years it replaces fossil fuels, that’s a market of 17,000 billions of dollars.

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The facility would be positioned on the International Space Station (ISS) to facilitate round-the-clock access to solar power. It would get into space while reflecting enough sunlight back to Earth to help capture solar energy. The idea of ​​orbital solar reflectors was first presented to the Senate in 1977. Since then, many scientists have toyed with the idea.

Researchers at the University of Glasgow are currently working on large-scale satellite solar reflector technology that would allow large-scale solar farms to access sunlight at night. China has also announced plans to release artificial moons into space. The reflective objects would have enough light to replace streetlights by the end of this year.

According to Nowack, his initial idea was to have an infinitely long vacuum tube containing mirrors directed by sunlight into space. However, he revisited the idea due to its size and the resources it would require. With his current idea, a large wave of particles or light can be reduced to a single beam.

While the idea is good, Noack has a few challenges that the company is still trying to work around. He is currently trying to reduce costs, establishing a large area in the space required for the installation and raising funds.

“It’s a huge national security risk if China has access to electricity for 10 or 100 times cheaper than the United States,” he said, pointing to the geopolitical challenges of clean energy. cheap to go ahead.

Via interesting engineering

Main image via Pexels


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